For National Fertility Awareness week I thought I’d share my thoughts on what I believe to be the worst bits about trying to conceive and going through IVF. Feel free to add your own in the comments section, I’m all about positivity but we all need a rant now and again 🙂
Injections – For the most part I’ve always taken my medication at around 7am, apart from our 1st FET (Frozen Embryo Transfer for you non I.V.Effers). On this occasion I took it at 7pm, this was my worst cycle ever and my moods and other side effects were horrendous, obviously I blamed the timings (no idea why) and since then have vowed to never do it on an evening again. However, this now means that during cycles lie ins are a thing of the past and every weekend I curse my choice. Mind, I only have to think back to the time in that cycle, when I was on my knees crying on the bedroom floor because of my ever increasing pile of ironing, and it reminds me that maybe the 6:30 alarm isn’t so bad.
Bloating – as an avid (read obsessive) watcher of the scales, the bloat is definitely up there in the top ten worst things about IVF. Shallow I know, but I don’t care! High waisted jeans are both a blessing and a curse, great first thing for giving the illusion of an almost flat stomach….however, come 6pm it’s a different story as your zips threatening to burst and your circulation is almost cut off. Loose fitting attire is the way forward from as early as 3 days in if you ask me.
Crying (lots of) – I’ll be honest, I’m the type of person who will cry at anything. I’ve been know to shed a tear at Masterchef just because someones soufflé has collapsed. During a cycle of IVF my crying rate goes through the roof…. if we ever have to pay for a cycle I might ask Kleenex if they’ll sponsor it.
Other side effects – feelings of confusion and struggling to string a sentence together whilst on Buserelin, the insatiable thirst throughout the whole thing, the volume of water consumed trying to beat the thirst, the constant trips to the bathroom as a result of trying to combat the thirst. Talk about a vicious circle.
The 2 Week Wait – aka the longest 2 weeks ever, if only a fortnight sunbathing & drinking cocktails on holiday felt this long. The wait from the day of transfer to the day of pregnancy test is excruciating. When reading up on IVF before starting treatment I thought this part would be a doddle compared to the rest of it, how wrong I was. You analyse every little thing, convincing yourself that is has worked, hours later you’ve come to terms with the fact it hasn’t worked. This happens constantly throughout the 2ww, Google becomes your best friend and you can while away hours looking up symptoms. Of course it doesn’t help that the side effects of the pessaries/suppositories (your choice) that you have to use during the 2 weeks are exactly the same as the symptoms you would get in early pregnancy. Talk about a mind f*ck. Isn’t science brilliant!!!
The 3 Week Wait – as above but with added mind f*ckery!
Envy – Almost everyone in our social circles now either have children or are growing bumps. 50% of our social life is spent at christenings or in Mamas and Papas sourcing gifts for new additions to families. I mean, I enjoy shopping but sometimes I’d like to be going into such establishments to buy items for our own little family. No matter how happy you are for people when they tell you (and I am, I would never ever want someone to feel uncomfortable or worried about sharing their good news with me) you can’t help but feel a little bit envious. And don’t get me started on Facebook, it feels like new scan pics appear almost daily! And that’s why I’ve decided when we do fall pregnant I am going to bombard all forms of social media constantly, with updates of every step – pictures of me with the positive test result, scan pictures, me at 5 cms dilated etc, etc. *
Planning anything – planning a holiday, a short trip away or even a day/night out can become a military operation. Sunglasses and accessories are cast aside to make way for the drug stash. Feeling like an extra from Trainspotting whilst ‘shooting up’ in toilets is a common occurrence. Then there’s the feeling of selfishness you get when meeting with the clinic to discuss potential dates. Feeling disappointed that the dates that they’ve given you (and that you’ve been waiting for forever) now might clash with a planned big event or night out and you might have to miss it….and then feeling selfish and beating yourself up about it for feeling disappointed. It’s ridiculous that we feel bad for trying to lead a normal life outside of IVF.
Adverts like this…if only it was that easy!
I couldn’t think of a tenth, which goes to show that for all the things we put ourselves through maybe things aren’t so bad, and we know it will all be worth it once we get that positive result.
* I hereby promise that social media updates will be kept to a bare minimum once I am with child – especially any ‘nethers based’ statuses